Generally speaking, Himalayan holidays are experiences you get to sense once in a lifetime. Very few people are adventurers, and if you think now it’s the time to face your fears and engage in a unique vacation, the Himalayan mountain chain is exactly what you need.
Mount Everest Base Camp
In 1953 Sir Edmund Hilary and Tenzing Norgay reached the top of the highest mountain in the world and proved it was possible. To get there you will face avalanches, below freezing temperatures and altitude sickness. You will also need considerable financial backing to ensure you have the equipment and guides to survive this challenge. Less arduous but still incredibly challenging is the Mount Everest Base Camp. The camp is at 17,000 feet and involves a very difficult sixty mile trek. The reward is a sense of achievement and the knowledge you are a stone’s throw from the highest point on earth. Everything is covered in snow and the only sound at night is the Yak.
This is the spiritual home of the Dalai Lama and is of incredible importance to any Tibetan. It is also one of the highest cities in the world and is now accessible thanks to the train line which connects Beijing and Shanghai. The Dalai Lama’s winter palace dominates the view and has been home to the Dalai Lama since the seventh century.
Unfortunately the palace is now empty as the 14th Dalai Lama fled into exile in 1959. The site attracts many pilgrims and tourists who mix together in a slightly uneasy atmosphere. The city is also home to the Jokhang temple where pilgrims head to pray. It was constructed 1,300 years ago and is home to a golden statue of Buddha along with the Ten Thousand Buddha corridor.
Darjeeling is famous around the world as a type of tea. The town sits at the base of Kanchenjunga. This mountain is huge and climbs into the clouds. The summit is around 28,000 feet. Darjeeling is at its feet and surrounded by beautiful green fields of tea. The Darjeeling Himalaya railway was constructed by the British Raj and is still the best way to visit the town. If the view at the town wasn’t enough the railway travels through vast green tea fields and valleys whilst climbing to Ghoom - the second highest railway station in the world.
Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve
The Garhwal Himalayas is home to the Valley of the Flowers and is one of the most spectacular attractions in the Uttaranchal. The Nanda Devi biosphere reserve consists of the Valley of flowers and Nanda Devi National Park. It all sits is India and attracts thousands of bird watchers, conservationists and plant lovers every year. It is also very popular with hikers who can explore the reserve before or after tackling a mountain or two. In April the snow has gone and the ground is covered with Alpine flowers.
Some of these flowers have only been seen in this valley and are listed as endangered. It is only possible to visit in the daytime as the government is attempting to preserve these rare flowers and does not wish to damage the infrastructure. The musk deer can often be seen here and make a fantastic addition to any picture.
Have you made a decision yet? The great Himalayan mountain chain is packed with superb travel destinations. Starting from the most soothing and alluring to the most adventurous, you’ll certainly find something here to exceed your expectations. Have a camera with you all the time – all the landscapes and sceneries here are spectacular.
Site updated on 23. September 2021